As a global supply chain leader, how often have you considered whether your strategy is truly relevant and value creating? Moreover, and more importantly, can your current supply chain strategy be sustained in the long-term? While thinking about these perplexing questions, perhaps conducting a bit of a supply chain assessment might serve you well. Consider this, sometimes the most effective initiatives; the ones that really deliver meaningful results aren’t developed with the latest avant-garde concepts, but in-fact done simply by executing the fundamentals of business really well. Regardless of your supply chain discipline, one very basic, but highly effective exercise is benchmarking and comparing your performance with other companies in the similar arena. At the end of the day, results matter most, and what works is what counts. Having personally been a part of several supply chain strategies throughout my career, I have found benchmarking to be one of the simplest, yet most powerful tools anyone can use while assessing their supply chain relevance, or even developing their strategy for that matter.
Benchmarking Brings Clarity to Your Strategy
So, where do you start with your benchmarking exercise. At the most basic core of any business endeavor is being profitable, and being profitable means you’re doing most things very well. But regardless of how successful your firm is, there is always room to get better, and a successfully executed supply chain strategy can help fuel many of the initiatives for the business. Getting your supply chain strategy “right” is critical. As you assess the global market place you’re competing within, consider the following questions: where do you need to compete more strongly, where are you most vulnerable, and what must improve? Conversely, asking a significantly different set of questions can be equally compelling, such as: what are you doing well, where do you stand, and what do you need to keep doing well? Change for change’s sake can be destructive, and often times winning with your supply chain means not only knowing what to change, but what not to change.
How is Your Supply Chain Performing Within the Global Marketplace?
A good first step is to candidly consider how your supply chain is performing verses aspirational-type firms, or at least aspirational-type metrics you wish to improve.